Skip to main content

Full text of "Rapid Population Growth Consequences And Policy Implications"

See other formats


in his rural survey that in those households that had members living in town there was a greater likelihood that other members were planning to migrate. These reports from various parts of the world suggest that it would not be far from the mark to say that a substantial majority (in most cases at least two thirds) of migrants to large cities in developing areas have relatives or friends already living there. If migration is not seen as an isolated movement specific in time to one or more individuals but as a process involving people at both ends, then this fact becomes understandable. It therefore is hardly accidental that for Monterrey the 84 percent who had relatives or friends living in Monterrey is very close to the 82 percent who maintain some kind of contact with relatives or friends where they lived longest prior to arrival in Monterrey. Abu-Lughod (41) has emphasized the essential continuity between rural village life and the environment the in-migrant encounters in Cairo.*
Migrant-Native Socioeconomic Differentials
As already noted, a common image of migrants to large cities in developing areas is one of a mass of untutored and unskilled peasants concentrated in slum districts on the outskirts of the cities who are unable to enter "into any productive relationship," to use Lerner's language (3). Since most observers reaching such conclusions have directed their attention only to low income areas of the city, their distortion of the socioeconomic position of all migrants was inevitable.
Investigators who have attempted to take the entire city into account present a different and far more complicated picture. In a study of Recife, Cruz (42, p. 115) found little socioeconomic difference between migrants and nonmigrants, based on a scale combining income and possession of items such
*A more detailed picture of the amount of kin and close friend interaction was obtained for Monterrey by asking if, upon arrival, migrants lived with relatives and/or had relatives in the same neighborhood. The relationship of this variable to education and employment is as follows:
Percent in Neighborhood Education                                     Kinship Network                    Number
Primary or less                                              73                                    686
Beyond primary                                            55                                    190
Last Employment before Monterrey
Farm                                                            82                                    292
Nonfarm                                                       62                                    447
The interesting feature of these data is that higher status individuals are less likely to be imbedded in neighborhood kinship networks. Perhaps the "detachment" Kuznets (36) talks about is manifested in this relationship. But in any event, it should be kept in mind that none of the above groups had less than half of their populations in neighborhood networks. The highest are those from farm backgrounds. They are the group who must make the (rreatest adjustment in stvlp. of livino nnH tVip.rpfnrp nrp nrp«nmali1\/ m^et inhe predominantly male rural-urban migration, in the multilingual character of the society, in the existence of polygamy, and